Let’s talk about Bird Sanctuaries

Many bird species are known to be highly sensitive to climate and weather changes, so are at high risk of climate change impacting distribution, population and extinction rates. As climate change shifts the timing of seasonal events, this is having a significant effect on bird species; particularly migratory species that are biologically tuned to the seasonal timing of multiple continents.

Pacific Islands play a significant role for many migratory birds, with both the East Asian—Australasian Flyway (EAAF) and West Pacific Flyway migratory routes crossing the paths of Pacific Nations. The effects of not only climate change but industrialisation and urbanisation across the Pacific is impacting both migratory species and many native Pacific species.

The World Database on Protected Areas (WDPA) lists only four areas in the Pacific that are classified as Bird Sanctuaries or Bird Reserves. However, many other areas also have a high conservation value related to protecting bird species which may or may not be recognised.

We invite you to join our Talanoa discussion on bird sanctuaries by sharing your experiences in this area, challenges and successes.

The following is a great resource to understand the devastating effect climate change is having on bird species:
Bird species and climate change: The Global Status Report: a synthesis of current scientific understanding of anthropogenic climate change impacts on global bird species now, and projected future effects.


Please see the following links for details on bird sanctuaries and bird reserves in the Pacific that already have WDPA classification.

Chenchon Park, Northern Mariana Islands


Cook Islet Closed Area (Kiritimati WS), Kiribati


Ngeriungs Bird Sanctuary, Palau


Ngermeskang Bird Sanctuary, Palau


Uafato village in partnership with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (M.N.R.E.) and the Samoa Conservation Society (S.C.S) recently opened a new bird watching and nature trail in Samoa. Not only is this trail helping towards the conservation of the native Manumea, but as a tourist attraction it is also helping to support the local village.


thanks Vai. Can you tell us how we can find out more about the bird reserves e.g. what species are included, I cant see any links to that information?

Areas that have been identified as globally important for seabirds -Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas for the Pacific are contained in this publication by BirdLife http://datazone.birdlife.org/userfiles/file/Marine/Important_areas_for_seabirds_in_pacific.pdf
Much more needs to be done to protect these Key Biodiversity Areas and identify gaps.
SPREP is developing a Regional Seabird Action plan, one of our series of action plans on migratory marine species. When it is ready and available for comment we can post it here!

Thanks Tony, I have downloaded to add to my collection. And one for you and others is this one - a collaboration between BirdLife and Audubon in the USA http://climatechange.birdlife.org/assets/THE_MESSENGERS_FINAL_WEB.pdf
It also explores nature based solutions

Thanks Karen, I’m having trouble downloading that resource from the birdlife site though. Is that PDF available anywhere else?

I don’t know where else it is available - I have a PDF I can send to you via We Transfer it’s 31MB

wetransfer or email would be great, I have sent you a PM with my email address.

Thanks You!

Got it, thanks Karen!

Alarming ( and concerning) findings of a recent study of migratory shorebirds being hunted along their migratory paths: https://pipap.sprep.org/news/endangered-shorebirds-unsustainably-hunted-during-migrations-records-show

good information thanks for sharing